Despite the genre’s long history, platform-based fighting games aren’t very common. Apart from Nintendo’s enormously popular Super Smash Bros. series, there haven’t been many noteworthy releases save Playstation All-Stars Battle Royale and a few fan creations. There hasn’t been any competition to switch up the formula up to now because of one significant property supporting the idea. Several Smash rivals have emerged during the course of the game’s more than 20-year existence, and many of them are available as PC games. In terms of breadth or origin, none quite match Nintendo’s games, but they are far from being just cash-ins on a trend.

Although the platform-fighter genre is as hazy and ethereal as any other, most of them share a few essential characteristics. Starting out, there’s a mix of precise hops in the Mario manner and brawls from Street Fighter. Even if they aren’t necessary components of the genre, easy controls and a large cast of well-known characters are crucial for establishing a game’s reputation as a party-friendly brawler (many releases follow that template). The majority also choose rules with sumo influences; instead of beating down your opponents to deplete their health bars, you knock them off stages. Anything is acceptable after that.

It is difficult, if not impossible, to compile an exhaustive list of platform fighters due to the rise of independent games, especially on PC. So that you can discover combat games that aren’t standard fighting games, we’ve compiled the most well-liked, well-known, and attractive titles in the category. Project M and Super Flash Bros. are examples of fan works that you won’t find; these selections are evidence of the enthusiasm and drive fans have had for this type of play. However, if you’re prepared to fight, these games will be helpful.


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Smash is to Brawlhalla what Tetris Effect is to Bejeweled. Brawlhalla is a free-to-play game that is accessible on PC, consoles, and mobile devices. It is lighter and lacks Smash’s spit-shine finish. It adds limitless wall jumps and other movement options, expanding Smash’s kinetic, fluid playstyle.

There is also a sizable, continuously expanding cast of characters, including Ryu from Street Fighter, The Rock from WWE, and Lara Croft from Tomb Raider. Many of these licensed combatants have purchase requirements, but that’s okay because the platform-fighter is fun and it’s worth the $20 for all existing and upcoming characters, according to PCMags Jordan Minor in his review.

MULTIVERSUS Brawlhalla (for PC) Review (Opens in a new window)

With MultiVersus from Warner Bros. Games, you can get rough with well-known characters from shows like Game of Thrones, Scooby-Doo, Where Are You?, Tom and Jerry, and others. Arya Stark, Batman, and Shaggy are just a few of the well-known characters in the free-to-play game’s tight multiplayer battle action, which will keep you engaged in the 1v1 and 2v2 modes.

A $100K competition prize will be awarded at Evo 2022 thanks to the ambitious esports goals of developer Player First Games. In other words, the group is targeting the esports audience. Given the enjoyable nature of the game, it might even be considered a success.

NICKELODEON ALL-STAR BRAWL review on MultiVersus (for PC) (Opens in a new window)

Nickelodeon All-Star Brawl comes the closest to being a true Smash contender of all the platform-fighters available for PC. Its main draw is the large cast, which features actors and locations from popular animated series including Avatar: The Last Airbender, SpongeBob SquarePants, and The Wild Thornberrys.

Even though Ludosity, the developer, didn’t add many new mechanics, those that are present function well. The well-implemented rewind netcode makes the online modes quick and lag-free. Numerous mobility and attack choices in All-Star Brawl are rounded out with the unique mechanism of strafing, which keeps the game’s play expressive and individualized.

All-Star Brawl is a wonderful fighting game in the emerging sub-genre, despite its lack of voice acting and content. Check out our Nickelodeon All-Star Brawl for Nintendo Switch review for additional information on the game.

SPLITS OF AETHER (Opens in a new window)

Rivals of Aether would have been quite similar to Super Smash Bros. if it had been released on the Super Nintendo. RoA is a tight, quick, and gorgeous platform-fighter game with a 16-bit twist. In addition to the twelve characters on the original cast, indie legends Shovel Knight and Ori also make cameos. All of them play excellently.

The other characters are all prepared for battle elemental beasts. Orcane brings fluid, flowing combos, while Forsburn can envelop himself in smoke and flame. A snappy, tight game that’s difficult to put down is made possible by the characters’ various weights and movement rates in combination with excellent animations. There is also a tale mode that gives the world and its inhabitants context.

A sequel that transitions to 2.5D is also tentatively scheduled for release later this year (with much more detailed character models and stages).


The free-to-play Rumble Arena, which freely acknowledges its Smash Bros. influences, first appeared as a mobile app. In reality, it uses the same percentage-based knockback concept and contains a number of well-known-looking stages.

The most intriguing element is cross-platform play between PC and mobile, but it’s important to consider how much value that adds to reflex-based battles (mobile games are notorious for their clunky controls, unless you have a dedicated mobile controller). On a PC, the levels’ mobile roots are obvious due to their lack of intricacy. Rumble Arena is still a versatile party game that you can play anywhere if you don’t take the matches too seriously.

Shovel Knight Battle (Opens in a new window)

Shovel Knight, a beloved indie title and Editors’ Choice selection, was a fantastic game from the 1980s. The retro-themed action platformer is still one of the best of its genre because it is precise, intelligent, and beautiful.

Shovel Knight Showdown was developed after the original game’s 2014 launch and was initially proposed as a Shovel Knight stretch goal on Kickstarter. Showdown is a stand-alone game featuring a large starting roster, characters that can be unlocked, and original scenarios. You can select between collect-a-thons and furious brawls in different game modes. It’s a wonderful title for party nights because previous series experience is neither necessary nor always useful.


The second Ludosity game on this list is Slap City. Nine characters taken from the Ludosity collection are included, however the performance itself would carry the experience if not for the character-based star power. Each character, thankfully, feels new. Jenny Fox is a vengeful vulpine with an ax, and Business Casual Man bashes opponents with massive sums of money.

The most significant innovation of Slap City is its tone, which is far more humorous than that of its rivals. Even so, it keeps up the crisp, crunchy action that attracts seasoned players. Slap City has a Clutch button that performs a variety of difficult technical techniques, which is a good touch. It enables you to short-hop on the ledge to access advanced techniques or wall-jump to survive a life-or-death crisis. Although quick reflexes are still required to succeed, Slap City is a fantastic development of the Smash philosophy.

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